Press-Republican

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August 22, 2013

Town of Plattsburgh eyes waterfront plan

PLATTSBURGH — The Town of Plattsburgh wants to develop a waterfront revitalization plan.

Town Planning Technician Trevor Cole said they would like to do a planning study and action plan on the waterfront areas in the town, especially the Saranac River and Lake Champlain.

That would include ways to improve public access to the water and connection to the City of Plattsburgh’s Saranac River Trail.

Cole said one of the priorities at the Clinton County Strategic Health seminar earlier this year was to create more access to the area’s natural features.

“If you don’t build it, they can’t come,” Cole said. “This is a chance to highlight the gems that are already here.”

The town would look at how to connect to the trail at the City of Plattsburgh line and expand it through the town and other communities, such as the Town of Schuyler Falls. 

Cole said recent changes to the town’s Zoning Ordinance included about 5 miles of Saranac River shoreline as Land Conservation district. That limits uses on that land between 100 and 200 feet in from the riverbank. 

FUNDING APPLICATION

Town Supervisor Bernie Bassett said improved access to and utilization of the waterfront areas were identified in the town’s recent Strategic Economic Development Plan as one of the keys to sustain growth. The town’s location on what is billed as “the Adirondack Coast” has been a focus for the past year or so, he said.

Cumberland Bay is seeing increasing use as a site for windsurfing and related activities, as indicated by the upcoming American Windsurfing Tour, set for Sept. 28 and 29. To that end, the town should look at increased access to the water on Cumberland Head, Cole said. 

Town officials have looked at other waterfront and trail communities for ideas, such as those along the Erie Canal Trail in Central New York.

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